Estate Administration and Probate Proceedings
We assist clients with Estate Administration necessary to conclude the final affairs of their loved ones. Regardless of whether there was a Will, family members may still need assistance with distributing real estate and personal property. Estate administration involves accounting for all the assets of an estate, paying off any of the decedent's debt, and distributing the remaining assets to beneficiaries. If someone dies with a Will (testate) then their named Executor will have to file a Probate petition in the Surrogate’s Court. Once the Court approves the appointment, the Executor will have the legal authority to collect and distribute assets according to the terms of the Will. If someone dies without a Will (intestate), an Administrator will need to be appointed to collect and distribute the assets under New York State Law. Not all assets need to go through the probate process. Assets that are owned jointly and assets that have a named beneficiary generally pass directly to the beneficiary or other joint owner. Our attorneys can help decide whether an estate needs to go through the probate process.